Soccer was good TV, wasn’t it?

| July 20, 2011

Tell the truth. Did you watch much of the U.S. women’s team in soccer’s World Cup?

I did. And this team was just as thrilling to watch as was the U.S. team that won it all in 1999

Even Brandi Chastain, one of the stars of the world champions along with Mia Hamm, Julie Foudy and Michelle Akers, were involved as ESPN analysts. And, no, Brandi didn’t take off her shirt this time around!

Mia is now Mrs. Nomar Garciaparra , former baseball star who is now a TV analyst.

Did you see where the U.S.-French semifinal was played? It was in Germany, but I can’t pronounce the city’s name and I certainly can’t spell it. But I looked it up. Here it is and I hope all of the name will go in one column:

Mönchengladbach.

And of course it has one of those funny German symbols, an umlaut, over the “o.”

OK, so our girls were nipped by the Japanese, but it revived interest in the game worldwide – and in women’s sports.

Valvano

When Bob Valvano first came to Louisville, Bellarmine University held a press conference in the Galt House to announce that he had been hired to coach the Knights basketball team.

In the last paragraph, the news release stated that Valvano  was a member of Mensa.

Privately, I told the coach that I knew what Mensa is and I congratulated him. I also told him that I doubted if the other media members had the slightest inkling of what Mensa is.

Well, what is it? To be a member of Mensa, people must have an IQ in the top two percent of the world’s population.

The organization has 110,000 members worldwide.

When my boss told me that he was going to write about a Mensa meeting, I suggested that he himself take the Mensa IQ test. Jacob Glassner – whoops, I didn’t mean to mention his name – not only took the test but aced it.

So that made two Mensans that I know.

If any other of my friends are members, I promise that I won’t tell.

Valvano, the brother of the late Jim Valvano, does a lot of TV work for ESPN during basketball season and has his own radio show on Louisville’s WHBE (680-AM) from noon-3 p.m.

Shines on ESPN-2

Bob got a chance Wednesday of last week to be one of the hosts on the popular “Mike and Mike” TV show on ESPN-2.

The show is immensely popular and it is for adults. You don’t have to be a Mensan, but it’s different than the usual TV sports show. Its regular members are Mike Greenberg, a Northwestern graduate, and Mike Golic, who was a tackle at Notre Dame and in the NFL.

The show, with help from Dick Vitale, raised money for the Jimmy V fund.

The two Mikes make their four-hour early morning show several cuts above ESPN’s usual fare. It’s for big boys and girls. No shouting, just intelligent conversation about sports, but at times Golic does get a little out of hand.

“Mike and Mike” starts at about 4 a.m. and the show runs until about 9 or 10 a.m.

Tax man cometh

Christian Lopez is the Yankee fan who retrieved Derek Jeter’s record-breaking home run ball and gave it to the Yankee shortstop with no strings attached.

Get a load of this: Lopez, a tackle in college, owes about $200,000 for his student loans.

The appreciative Yankee  management gave Lopez two great seats for the rest of this season and for possible playoff games, plus a few other goodies.

Tax experts figure that Lopez could wind up owing possibly $73,600.

He should demand the ball back. Then he could sell it for $200,000 or more. Of course he would then owe the tax man even more. You just can’t win!

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Category: Sports

About the Author (Author Profile)

Earl Cox, Sports Columnist
502.897.8910

Earl doesn¹t just write about sports legends, he counts many of them as his
friends. A member of the Kentucky Athletic Hall of Fame, he has been writing
about sports for 60 years. Incidentally, that¹s about how long it’s been
since he¹s cleaned his desk but he knows where everything is.

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